Scouting the Sun Belt: Arkansas St

Can new head coach Steve Roberts point the Indians in the right direction? Well, after years on single or two win seasons where the talent on the team constantly under-performed, the situation should improve. On occasion ASU sends a rookie free agent into the mix and for the most part that will be the case this year, notwithstanding one very talented offensive lineman.

Arkansas State Indians

That one talented offensive lineman we mentioned, tackle Gary Johnson, must quickly pick up the tempo and intensity of his game, or he will be yet another "underachiever" from this program. Johnson plays with great fundamentals and even greater strength. Once engaged with defenders at the point of attack Johnson easily controls them, removing opponents from the line on running plays or holding his ground in pass protection. He absolutely dominates yet displays the ability to play in space…when he wants to. All too often Johnson seems just content on handling the situation in front of him rather than attacking the opponent and looking to help out line-mates or bury defenders. He also looks a little heavy and overweight at times. If come off with a poor attitude prior to the draft he'll slip into the late rounds but, should he get an invite to the Senior Bowl (a definite possibility) and prove his worth before scouts, he could sneak into the draft's first as one of the higher rated guards on the board (a position we feel he's best suited for). John Crossley has the intensity scouts look for and while the guard displays some strength at the point, he is a limited athlete that cannot move in space and is more than likely a free agent. Receiver/return specialist James Hickenbotham is small but explosive and his ability to change the tempo of games with big returns will garner interest, possibly keeping him on a roster next year.

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